Lice Control in Cattle

Lice Control in Cattle

February 2017

As we approach the mid-point of winter cattle lice populations will usually increase. Cattle lice are a cold season insect with populations most noticeable during December, January, February, and start to decline during March as sunlight increases and temperatures warm.

Lice populations can be divided into three categories: low (1-5 lice/in2), medium (6-10 lice/in2), and heavy (more than 10 lice/in2). The goal is to keep lice populations from reaching a moderate to heavy population level. University of Nebraska and other research studies indicated heavy lice populations (> 10 lice/in2) may reduce weight gains by as much as 0.21 lb/day. These studies also indicate animals fed at a higher nutrition level had lower lice populations and were affected less severely than animals fed a maintenance ration.

For more information on cattle lice affecting Nebraska cattle, lice control products, application timing and management strategies, please see the following:

David Boxler
Extension Educator
West Central Research & Extension Center
University of Nebraska–Lincoln